Building Writerly Friendships
Hi all! Today I want to talk a little bit about friendships between writers.
As I was searching for a topic for this post over the past few days, I also was looking forward to having lunch with Meghan Rogers, an author I met last year. Meghan and I both debuted in 2016 and published sequel novels this year (if you're unfamiliar with Meghan's amazing Raven Files books, you can read about them on her website.) As I was heading out for our lunch, I thought of all the things that are happening in my writing life that I was looking forward to sharing, and the updates on her writing I was looking forward to hearing. Because let's be honest. How many people do I have lunch with who really understand the highs and lows of the writing life? Although I've never been one to surround myself with a large group of friends, I have learned over the years that my relationships with other writers have meant an awful lot to me.
Writing is solitary, and that's not always a bad thing. One thing Meghan and I laughed about at our lunch is our mutual fondness for a long day spent all alone writing. However, though I love to write alone, I don't like to feel alone in my writing world. Whether I'm looking for someone who will listen to my plot problem or celebrate solving one with me, there's nothing like another writer when it comes to really "getting it."
But where do writers meet? Where can you find these writerly friends? Here are some ideas:
Join a writing organization and get involved locally. As a YA author, I belong to SCBWI, but there are organizations dedicated to supporting romance writers, mystery writers, etc. Once you join a national organization, be sure to find your local chapter and get involved. You'll make friends and gain new knowledge at the same time.
Take a class. At our lunch, Meghan mentioned how writers can connect with each other simply by signing up for a non-credit creative writing class at a local college, which is another great opportunity to meet like-minded people while learning.
The local library or bookstore. You're going there anyway! Many libraries and bookstores are the meeting place for local writers' groups. Check with someone on staff or look up the events calendar online. And if your local bookstore or library doesn't yet have a writers' group, consider starting one!
Meetups. Meetup.com is a great way to find groups of all kinds. A simple search by topic will reveal all the groups that meet in your area, whether you're looking for a fiction workshop, a poetry group, or just about anything else. Meetups allow you to try on a group without making a commitment, so you can visit a few until you find one where you feel at home.
Those are my ideas, but I know there are others! How do you connect with other writers? Please share your ideas in the comments!